arT: "We are trying to find stability so that we can play at the same level against every team"
FURIA made quick work of their opponents in Group A at DreamHack Open Anaheim, swiftly dispatching of Endpoint in their opening match before crushing North 16-3 on Overpass to secure themselves a spot in the semi-finals on Sunday.
In an interview conducted shortly after their match against North, in-game leader Andrei "arT" Piovezan spoke to us about how FURIA made such short work of their opponents and why they feel more confident against North. He also talked about how they are recovering from a fall-off in form at the end of last year, and the freedom that rifling more has provided him.
In your first match you took on Endpoint and got past them pretty easily, and then you came into this North match and just blew them out of the water. Tell me about why these matchups were so one-sided for your team.
Confidence was the key. Against Endpoint we started a little slow, but after we won that 2vs5, we just got so confident and then we snowballed against them. For North, we always have good games against them, and we find it much easier to play them than other teams. We start the game confident and we know what we have to do.
Why do you think you play better against North than other teams?
Because of the playstyle that they have. We played Overpass against them once or twice, and I remember it was hard, but we also felt comfortable.
You've done pretty well in your two matches here so far, but before the player break, you were struggling a little bit. What did you do to fix your form this past month?
A big thing that happened to us in the last part of the year was that we did not have enough time to practice after HEN1 joined the team, not even one full week. We were playing tournament after tournament, and the only chance we've had to practice with him was this year, from the middle of January to the start of February. That's the only time we've been able to actually sit down and talk about the game, theorize, and play some maps.
You're pretty famous for some aggressive pocket strategies, like creating smoke walls on Mirage and running through them early into a round. With some changes recently, like the bench on Mirage, how has it been designing new tactics for some of these maps?
We have a lot of plays that we are trying to save for the Major playoffs, but if we need them at DreamHack, we will use them. We had enough time to create a lot of new things, a lot of plays that we have never done before, so I'm very excited to play some games now.
You've been rifling quite a bit more since HEN1 joined the team. How are you feeling in-game?
I feel more free now. I was stuck in most positions because I was AWPing, so I actually like the way I'm playing right now much more because I don't have to hold angles, I can just look at the map, call, and rotate. I just need more time to adapt for the new playstyle I'm trying to do.
Both you and MIBR have fallen off from your past form by a decent margin, why do you think that is the case?
In the case of MIBR, the reason they are not stepping up is because they were changing players a lot, and it's always hard get back on track after doing that.
For us, I would say we actually never hit the consistency we needed. We went up the rankings and beat a lot of teams, but we never had the consistency, that's why we changed the lineup twice. Now, with HEN1, we are trying to find stability so that we can play at the same level against every team, every time.
You are now through to the playoffs on Sunday. Are you planning to practice on your day off, or do you have other plans?
We don't feel the need to practice, we're prepared to play right now. We're just going to relax and wait for our opponents to be determined, and from there we can plan what we are going to do and analyze their games.
To be honest, we don't really care about what opponent we get. I think everybody plays at the same level and anyone can upset. We actually were a bit worried about Endpoint, we knew we were the better team, but we never overlook an opponent just because they're unknown since CS is very stacked right now.